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Nearly Half Of Americans Say Donald Trump's Indictment For Mishandling Classified Papers Is 'Interference' In The Former President's 2024 Election Bid, A Dailymail.Com/TIPP Poll Shows

Even many Democrats say the charges are about next year's White House race.

Photo: Gage Skidmore from Peoria, AZ, via Wikimedia Commons
Editor's note: This story by James Reinl, based on the Poll, appeared on the DailyMail website.
  • Trump says the various prosecutions against him are 'election interference'
  • Even many Democrats say the charges are about next year's White House race
  • Read about Trump becoming a 'target' in Jack Smith's January 6 probe

Nearly half of US voters see the prosecution of Donald Trump for mishandling classified documents as an effort to derail the former president's 2024 election bid, a Poll shows.

Our polling reveals that 47 percent of adults see his indictment as 'election interference,' including most Republicans and many Democrats. Another 40 percent disagreed, and 13 percent said they were not sure.

The results come after Trump's lawyers asked a US federal judge to delay his trial for unlawfully retaining national defense documents and obstructing efforts to retrieve them until after the 2024 election.

They also come as Trump says he's bracing for a third indictment and imminent arrest after revealing he has received a target letter from special counsel Jack Smith over his role in the assault on the US Capitol on January 6, 2021.

Regular Americans do not appear to be convinced that the charges are fair, with nearly half of people in all parts of the country and from all age groups saying they amount to election interference.

GOP voters are more likely to see the documents probe as political than are Democrats, but by a slim margin. Some 54 percent of Republicans eye election interference, compared to 46 percent of Democrats.

The survey of 1,341 adults was conducted earlier this month.

Trump has derided the various charges against him as a political witch hunt, and speaking in early-voting state Iowa on Tuesday spoke out against an expected prosecution over his role in the January 6 Capitol riot.

'They're in a rush because they want to interfere,' he told a pro-Trump crowd.

'It's interference with the election. It's election interference. Never been done like this in the history of our country, and it's a disgrace.'

In a dramatic post on his Truth Social account on Tuesday, Trump said he had received a target letter while having dinner on Sunday night, saying he is the subject of a criminal investigation into the Capitol riot and his bid to overturn the 2020 election.

Trump said he would 'almost certainly' be arrested and indicted and had been given four days to respond.

Special Counsel Jack Smith already charged Trump on 37 felony counts alleging he illegally kept classified records at his Mar-a-Lago estate

In the post, he ripped into Special Prosecutor Jack Smith, claimed the investigation is 'election interference' and accused President Joe Biden of 'going after his 'number one political opponent.'

Trump still dominates the polls in the race to be the Republican nominee in the 2024 election, but could now be facing three criminal trials during the campaign.

He could face charges of obstructing an official proceeding — related to Congress' electoral college count on January 6 — and defrauding the government over an alleged 'fake electors' scheme.

A target letter means investigators have gathered substantial evidence linking the recipient to a crime, indicating that an indictment is near. Usually, such letters invite the recipient to appear before a grand jury to offer evidence.

Trump was indicted last month on 37 felony counts alleging he illegally kept classified records at his Mar-a-Lago estate in Florida and refused government demands to give them back.

He and his valet, Walt Nauta, who was also charged, have both pleaded not guilty.

Trump's angry response to the looming charges over the January 6 insurrection
Trump added another post on his Truth Social account reiterating that he is the victim of a witch hunt, and the prosecution amounts to election interference

Those charges against Trump include violations of the Espionage Act, which criminalizes unauthorized possession of defense information. Trump, 77, would face a sentence of up to 20 years in prison if convicted.

The trial was initially set to start in August, but at a hearing in Florida this week, Trump's lawyer Christopher Kise asked US District Judge Aileen Cannon to consider the election schedule in deciding a new trial start date.

Kise said that because Biden's US Justice Department brought the charges, the case could be seen as the 'two leading contenders for president of the United States squaring off in court.'

Prosecutor David Harbach called suggestions of political interference 'flat out false.'

He noted that US Attorney General Merrick Garland appointed Smith as special counsel to distance the investigation from politics.

The former president also is under criminal investigation by a Georgia state prosecutor for his attempt to get election officials there to reverse his loss to Biden in that state.

The prosecutor in Georgia said she plans to present criminal charges in August.

And he was indicted in the state of New York in early April by Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg with 34 felony counts of falsifying business records related to a hush money payment to porn star Stormy Daniels during the 2016 election.

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